Gambling in 2012 - Part I
Many years from now, historians, gambling industry professionals and any other inquisitive people might look back and wonder what happened in the online gambling industry in 2012.
Fortunately they will need to look no further. We’ve collected and summarised some of the biggest gambling news from 2012 right here. From social casinos to The Dark Knight slot and even the Houses of Parliament being knocked down, we've managed to get quite a lot of it covered – enjoy!
Gambling is a big deal, it always has been. What hasn't always been such a big deal are social networks. Now, however, you can move online for a Facebook logo or news about someone's Tweets. As a result it was inevitable that the two worlds were going to collide and so they have.
Coming at the situation from a different angle was Zynga who had already conquered the social network but knew nothing about offering real money gambling. However that has stopped them as they've now confirmed that they will be launching a real-money gambling app on Facebook early in 2013.
Finally, the ears of online casino operators have also pricked at the sound of real-money gambling taking place on Facebook. Most have been busy devising strategies and putting plans into action while 888 is among one of the casinos that have been quick to make a move on the situation.
Along with social media, the explosion of mobile gambling has been one of the biggest revelations of the past few years. First it was sports betting where customers couldn't wait to bet on the move but gradually casinos have started to catch up.
In terms of who's been providing the best mobile casino services so far, unsurprisingly opinion is divided. However, Microgaming has certainly been very popular with mobile casino players and, as was the case with online casinos, appeared to have stolen the early march on their competitors.
This helped many of their operators to start posting impressive mobile results. As the first to launch a downloadable Android app, Spin Palace were able to provide a great product while mobile gaming clearly helped out at Ladbrokes.
Much of this mobile success has been some time in the making though. Some online casino operators were pretty slow off the mark which is surprising as most like to think of themselves as being innovative. Betfair, for example, are usually at the forefront of technological but didn't even launch a mobile casino until March of 2012.
In there ever-changing world of online gambling, casinos are constantly updating themselves to ensure that they're ahead of the curve.
In 2012, few online gambling outfits have changed much more than Ladbrokes. The company has taken on a new approach and is gradually updating just about every one of their services. Having looked around their head office this summer we reported on the changes being made.
One casino where major changes have also been taking place is William Hill Casino, although you wouldn't know to look at it. In fact, the changes are taking place behind the scenes where after a less than friendly history, co-owners William Hill are looking to buy Playtech out of the company.
32Red is one of our favourite online casinos and they get a special mention here despite having not made any major changes. In fact, they've done quite the opposite by promising to keep focusing on what has made them so popular in the first place – customer service. On the back of some solid financial results in the summer, CEO Ed Ware promised to keep working to 'enhance the player experience'.
The Dark Knight Slot
By some stretch the biggest new casino game release of 2012 was The Dark Knight slot. Created by Microgaming, news of the slot first broke at the beginning of the year as the company looked to follow on from their previous success with branded games such as Lara Croft.
Following the removal of The Lord of the Rings slot from Microgaming casinos we were then treated to the new game at the end of June. In celebration of the launch we took a look at all things Batman and casino combined and found quite a bit to talk about as you can see.
The Dark Knight slot was a big hit and continued on from the success of the feature film The Dark Knight Rises. With a slot coming under the same name due next year we can't wait to see what Microgaming come up with.